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    From: (Jms at B5)
 Subject: Re: AttN jms: Where Are All the American Playwrights?
    Date: 6/22/1998 9:47:00 AM  

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>Wasn't one of the original promises of PBS to bring back this type of
>"alternate" programming to TV? They do have the occasional great
>drama, but it seems to be wholly of British origins. Where are the
>new Serlings or Chayefskys on the tube?

Yeah, well, PBS seems to be dropping the ball, frankly, most notably with their
decision not to do more Tales of the City, largely because of political
concerns, leaving it to Showtime to take up the standard.

>I hate to blame everything on American TV executives and their
>perspectives (or lack thereof...). Would you mind sharing your
>insider view?

Main thing is the different time periods. When TV first got going, they were
frantic to legitimize the form, and drew in a lot of writers from radio drama
and the stage. (Actually, Serling came mainly from radio, not so much stage.)
So there was a concerted recruitment effort. Also, one of the problems is that
there's a bit of an onus attached to TeeVee in the Theater world, so a lot of
folks who could do good work in TV don't come and play with us.


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